Who We Are / What We Do

Who We Are

If you’ve ever dreamed of a society where people can stop fearing and “fighting” against fire, and instead, learn how to work safely and live sustainably with fire–you are not alone! FUSEE is full of people just like you. You don’t have to be a wildland firefighter to support FUSEE–just believe in the right of firefighters and other fire-related workers to work safely, ethically, and ecologically.

Our members and supporters include current, former, and retired wildland firefighters, agency and academic scientists, researchers and educators and students, rural residents, forest conservationists, and other concerned citizens who support our vision and mission for safe, ethical, ecological fire management.

What We Do

FUSEE engages in public education and policy advocacy promoting safe, ethical, ecological fire management. Visit our Publications section for educational whitepapers and instructional guides that we have produced that incorporate the latest science and policy information affecting a broad range of fire management issues, along with a sample of publications in other sources that help make the case for fundamental change in wildfire policies and practices. We also share our philosophy and information through formal presentations delivered at professional science and environmental conferences. Check our list of conference presentations to see the variety of topics and places we have carried the torch.

FUSEE also has an active program of media education and outreach that encourages more in-depth, critical investigative reporting on a broad range of fire-related issues beyond the conventional “war reporting” of wildfire suppression incidents. Visit our Media section for reporter’s guides and tipsheets, along with an archive of our press releases and numerous media stories quoting FUSEE sources.

FUSEE actively engages in advocacy work to promote scientifically-sound, socially-progressive fire management policies and practices, and opposes regressive policy proposals that would increase the risks, costs, or damages of fire suppression.  FUSEE helps educate policymakers in the U.S. Congress and Administration about fire ecology and management issues, providing critical input from a firefighter’s perspective on fire-related legislative proposals. Visit our Policy section for examples of some of our policy analyses and advocacy materials, along with an archive of essential policy documents from federal agencies and other non-governmental organizations.

FUSEE conducts a variety of educational or advocacy projects on several specific issues of key interest to the fire management community and society at large. Visit our Issues and Actions section to survey some of the specific areas we are working on which currently include: monitoring of wildfire suppression operations and incidents, the rising costs of fire suppression, the significant environmental and ecological impacts of aggressive suppression, the costs and impacts of post-fire “salvage” logging, and the beneficial applications of ecological fire use.

FUSEE provides “news and views you can use” via FUSEE’s blog, Spotfire! This is our venue for sharing our unique voice on current issues and events affecting the fire management and forest conservation communities. We often “lead the news” with expose’s of current events and policy proposals. Through our blog, we are able to share information sent to us from confidential sources working on the frontlines of wildfire incidents or policy-making efforts. FUSEE hosts a team of bloggers with a wealth of fire experience and expertise, and we invite anyone to provide constructive comments to our blog posts that furthers the discussion.

FUSEE is a not-for-profit organization that networks and collaborates with anyone who shares our philosophy. We are not affiliated with any government agency, academic department, private company, or political party, and offer a safe avenue for members of the wildland fire community to confidentially share their experiences and expertise with the public, policymakers, and the press without fear of reprisal from their employers. We never share our list of members or supporters with anyone. All donations are tax-deductible, and provide essential support for our education and advocacy programs and projects.

Our Symbol & Motto

The acronym and symbol of our organization is the fusee, a handheld torch used by wildland firefighters to proactively ignite fires. Fusees are used in wildfire suppression to secure firelines and create safety zones, and are used in prescribed burning to reduce hazardous fuels and restore fire-adapted ecosystems. The fusee ignites easily, burns brightly, and spreads fire rapidly. FUSEE shines a light on the many social, cultural, political, economic, and ecological factors affecting the wildland fire community, and strives to be a trailblazer in advocating real change in fire management philosophy, policy, and practices. Our motto: we’re torchbearers for a new paradigm of Ecological Fire Management!